After months of trying, agricultural product exporters have gradually worked out operation plans to adapt to the pandemic and proactively overcome difficulties.
Tan Huong Agricultural Product Processing JSC. is not only interested in export but also intensifying the exploitation of the domestic consumption market with dried spice products
The Covid-19 pandemic greatly affected businesses' export of agricultural products in the past time. However, many enterprises are no longer passive and surprised like in the early stages but proactively prepare long-term plans to cope with and adapt to all levels of the pandemic.
Diverse export products, markets
In 2020, Covid-19 appeared and broke out on a large scale in Vietnam, afflicting agricultural product exporters in the province. Purchase and export were upset, and businesses could not ensure supply and delivery time for their customers. A lot of enterprises had to change their production and business plans and targets.
Nonetheless, after months of trying, enterprises have gradually worked out operation plans to adapt to the pandemic and proactively overcome difficulties.
Kim Chinh JSC. in Ai Quoc ward, Hai Duong city, is one of big agricultural product exporters in the province. Its traditional markets are China, South Korea, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Malaysia, Dubai, etc. To overcome difficulties and "live with the pandemic", leaders of the company have taken many sustainable and flexible measures in export.
For more than a year, instead of focusing on one product, the firm has diversified and found new ones for export by season. It is exporting not only carrots but also bananas and thieu lychees and will export fresh chilies, longan, etc. in the near future.
Together with the existing markets, the company has extended to new countries. Especially, 2021 is the first year the company has been able to export thieu lychees to the UK and the Netherlands. In the coming time, the unit will export longan to the two countries.
The company is also preparing resources and materials to export chilies to South Korea, Dubai, and Malaysia.
Sales manager of the company Pham Ngoc Thuc said that in the context of strong outbreaks of Covid-19 in countries around the world, market expansion is very difficult, especially fastidious markets.
To meet orders and strict requirements of partners, the firm was compelled to take the initiative in materials and improve the quality of products. Besides, it must proactively diversify exports and seek new markets to avoid dependence on a specific country.
"We are coordinating with the Vietnam National University of Agriculture to research on increasing goods preservation time to meet quality requirements in case of long-distance transport of agricultural products," said Thuc.
In previous years, Hanh Khanh Agricultural Product Import and Export Co., Ltd. in Tien Tien commune, Hai Duong city, only exported carrots to South Korea and stopped when a season ended.
However, in 2021, the enterprise has been able to officially export thieu lychees to South Korea for the first time.
"Market expansion for risk dispersion and diversification of exports are really necessary to adapt to the epidemic. We have worked with a number of partners in Singapore and Japan, so we will export carrots and lychees to these two markets in the coming years," said director of the company Le Van Hanh.
Since the beginning of 2021, Tan Huong Agricultural Product Processing JSC. in Cam Van commune, Cam Giang district, has adjusted itself in the direction of increasing dried products and decreasing frozen ones to utilize all materials in export.
Since early this year, the proportion of the firm's dried exports has risen by about 30% over the same period last year.
Together with export, the business is step by step exploiting the domestic market with dried spice products.
Proactive preparation of materials
2021 is the first year Kim Chinh JSC. has been able to export thieu lychees to the UK and the Netherlands
Agricultural product exporters will face a lot of difficulties when their material regions are located in localities locked down because of the epidemic. In order not to disrupt material supply when the epidemic breaks out in a specific locality, enterprises have proactively built material supply areas.
Instead of having supply sources in the province, Kim Chinh JSC. has associated and extended material regions to many other provinces and cities like Lai Chau, Dien Bien, Yen Bai, and Tuyen Quang. The company has associated with a number of households and cooperatives in these localities for material zoning to grow hundreds of hectares of bananas, carrots, and chilies.
Tan Huong Agricultural Product Processing JSC. exports 5,000 – 6,000 tons of carrots each year. Director Nguyen Duc Doan said that Covid-19 had posed many challenges for his company. To adapt, the company was forced to reshape its production and business development direction.
The enterprise re-planned its material areas in the province in the direction of adding them up to form large regions to take the initiative in labor and harvesting time.
To disperse risks, the company expanded its material supply areas to different provinces. Previously, the firm only built cultivation areas in three provinces, but since 2020, it has extended the scale to three more localities.
Agricultural products are seasonal commodities, harvested in a short time, and easily damaged. To meet specific requirements of each partner, every agricultural product exporter must have specific purchase, preliminary processing, packaging, and preservation processes and be careful in each stage. Special importance must be attached to commodity preservation during transport. Especially, agricultural products must be refrigerated; however, there are few refrigerated container suppliers in Hai Duong in particular and Vietnam in general, yet to meet the demand.